Though I wouldn’t call “The Pleasure In Suffering” the best Brutal Death record since the subgenre’s inception, PUTRID PILE’s sophomore effort is perhaps a milestone for its sole member Shaun LaCanne. I’m sure the task of writing and recording an entire album was daunting at first, but as the tested results indicate, the skills of this Wisconsinite excel in the face of adversity. On the flip side, while not bereft of distinguishing qualities, this does blend in too much with the rest of Goregiastic’s catalog to warrant major accolades, or even a full-fledged recommendation.
For the most part, though, I have no reservations imbibing what’s on tap here. At half an hour, “The Pleasure In Suffering” doesn’t linger and arguably that’s one of its many strengths. Another trait worth its weight in blood is LaCanne’s vast musical talent in his handling of vocals, guitars, bass, drum programming, among others. Comparable to purveyors currently nesting within Goregiastic’s fold, PUTRID PILE went so far as to solicit members of SCREAMING AFTERBIRTH and LUPARA for guest vocal work, which wasn’t manipulated in any way, as LaCanne is quick to point out in the liner notes. However, the Brutal Death Metal trademarks saturate this disc, including soundclips, gory lyrics and misogynistic imagery, leaving “The Pleasure In Suffering” without noticeable highlights and lowlights. In other words, out of the 12 tracks, one is just as good as another and so on.
Admittedly, I like Brutal Death because it’s so intense and unforgiving. In spite of that, however, it doesn’t have much staying power for reasons unbeknownst to me. While PUTRID PILE are to be admired – or perhaps LaCanne himself – for such dedication, I have trouble fully endorsing “The Pleasure In Suffering.” It is one of the best of the Goregiastic bunch, though, sitting alongside fellow releases by PROPHECY, CORPSEFUCKING ART and CEREBRAL EFFUSION. Maybe now Wisconsin will be known for more than its cheese and the Green Bay Packers. Tourist brochures with PUTRID PILE artwork? In all honesty, that sounds like a fantastic idea. (Online May 1, 2006)